Article

Influences on the quality of young children's diets: the importance of maternal food choices.

MRC Epidemiology Resource Centre, University of Southampton, Southampton General Hospital, Southampton SO16 6YD, UK.
The British journal of nutrition (Impact Factor: 3.34). 01/2011; 105(2):287-96. DOI: 10.1017/S0007114510003302
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT It is recognised that eating habits established in early childhood may track into adult life. Developing effective interventions to promote healthier patterns of eating throughout the life course requires a greater understanding of the diets of young children and the factors that influence early dietary patterns. In a longitudinal UK cohort study, we assessed the diets of 1640 children at age 3 years using an interviewer-administered FFQ and examined the influence of maternal and family factors on the quality of the children's diets. To describe dietary quality, we used a principal components analysis-defined pattern of foods that is consistent with healthy eating recommendations. This was termed a 'prudent' diet pattern and was characterised by high intakes of fruit, vegetables and wholemeal bread, but by low intakes of white bread, confectionery, chips and roast potatoes. The key influence on the quality of the children's diets was the quality of their mother's diets; alone it accounted for almost a third of the variance in child's dietary quality. Mothers who had better-quality diets, which complied with dietary recommendations, were more likely to have children with comparable diets. This relationship remained strong even after adjustment for all other factors considered, including maternal educational attainment, BMI and smoking, and the child's birth order and the time spent watching television. Our data provide strong evidence of shared family patterns of diet and suggest that interventions to improve the quality of young women's diets could be effective in improving the quality of their children's diets.

Download full-text

Full-text

Available from: Sian M Robinson, May 01, 2014
0 Followers
 · 
127 Views
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Apart from direct inheritance and the effects of a shared environment, maternal health, eating habits and diet can affect offspring health by developmental programming. Suboptimal maternal nutrition (i.e., either a reduction or an increase above requirement) or other insults experienced by the developing fetus can induce significant changes in adipose tissue and brain development, energy homeostasis, and the structure of vital organs. These can produce long-lasting adaptations that influence later energy balance, and increase the susceptibility of that individual to obesity and the components of the metabolic syndrome. Studies that elucidate the mechanisms behind these associations will have a positive impact on the health of the future adult population and may help to contain the obesity epidemic. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
    Trends in Molecular Medicine 02/2015; 21(2). DOI:10.1016/j.molmed.2014.12.005 · 10.11 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Early life may be a "critical period" when appetite and regulation of energy balance are programmed, with lifelong consequences for obesity risk. Insight into the potential impact of modifying early-life risk factors on later obesity can be gained by evaluating their combined effects. The objective was to examine the relation between the number of early-life risk factors and obesity outcomes among children in a prospective birth cohort (Southampton Women's Survey). Five risk factors were defined: maternal obesity [prepregnant body mass index (BMI; in kg/m(2)) >30], excess gestational weight gain (Institute of Medicine, 2009), smoking during pregnancy, low maternal vitamin D status (<64 nmol/L), and short duration of breastfeeding (none or <1 mo). Obesity outcomes examined when the children were aged 4 and 6 y were BMI, dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry-assessed fat mass, overweight, or obesity (International Obesity Task Force). Data were available for 991 mother-child pairs, with children born between 1998 and 2003. Of the children, 148 (15%) had no early-life risk factors, 330 (33%) had 1, 296 (30%) had 2, 160 (16%) had 3, and 57 (6%) had 4 or 5. At both 4 and 6 y, there were positive graded associations between number of early-life risk factors and each obesity outcome (all P < 0.001). After taking account of confounders, the relative risk of being overweight or obese for children who had 4 or 5 risk factors was 3.99 (95% CI: 1.83, 8.67) at 4 y and 4.65 (95% CI: 2.29, 9.43) at 6 y compared with children who had none (both P < 0.001). Having a greater number of early-life risk factors was associated with large differences in adiposity and risk of overweight and obesity in later childhood. These findings suggest that early intervention to change these modifiable risk factors could make a significant contribution to the prevention of childhood obesity.
    American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 02/2015; 101(2):368-75. DOI:10.3945/ajcn.114.094268 · 6.92 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Addressing the national food insecurity problem requires an understanding and measurement of food insecurity at micro-level using a wide range of explanatory variables. Measurement of food insecurity is a challenge because it is a multi-faceted latent and continuous phenomenon explained by many variables. This paper examines these variables and applies exploratory factor analysis to identify variables which significantly influence household food insecurity and how they uniquely associate with specific food insecurity factors. Primary data on food availability, access, utilization and coping strategies were collected from 1175 randomly selected rural households in Tororo and Busia Districts of Uganda. Feasibility of exploratory factor analysis was analyzed using Pearson’s correlation coefficient. Bartlett’s test of sphericity tested for existence of relationships between variables and Kaiser-Meyer-Olkin Measure of Sampling Adequacy tested appropriateness of factor analysis. Factor extraction was done using Principle Component Analysis technique. Factor rotation was applied to achieve distinct associations of each variable with a factor. Twenty six (60%) of the 43 variables were retained and seven factors extracted. Determining key food insecurity factors and their associated variables is a crucial step in development of models that are effective in reliably measuring household food insecurity.